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Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Kohistan bus ambush kills 18

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Sectarian gunmen ambushed a bus on Tuesday, killing 18 Shia Muslims in a usually peaceful region of northern Pakistan that neighbours the former Taliban stronghold of Swat, officials said.
The bus was stopped, before passengers were ordered off and shot in the mountainous district of Kohistan as it travelled from Rawalpindi to the northern city of Gilgit.
“Armed men hiding on both sides of the road attacked the bus,” local police chief Mohammad Ilyas said.
“Eighteen people have died and eight wounded,” he added. The ambush happened near the town of Harban, 130 miles (208 kilometres) north of the capital Islamabad.
Survivors said seven or eight gunmen stopped the bus, forced the passengers to get off and then opened fire, regional administration chief Khalid Omarzai told AFP by telephone, confirming the casualty numbers.
“It appears to be a sectarian attack,” local MP Abdul Sattar Khan said.
“Its a remote area. We are getting reports that the gunmen forced people to get off the bus. They checked their papers and shot them dead,” he told AFP.
The victims were Shia Muslims, he said. “It could be the outcome of the murder of two Sunni Muslims a few days ago in Gilgit. The people of the area had vowed they would take revenge,” Khan added.
Authorities were slow to confirm the motive and insisted militants are not active in the area.
Kohistan borders the Swat valley, where Pakistan in 2009 managed to put down a two-year Taliban insurgency.
Omarzai told AFP that he could not immediately confirm whether it was a sectarian attack, saying that the police were investigating.
President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani had strongly condemned the Kohistan incident.
The two leaders directed the concerned authorities to ensure best medical treatment for the injured.
Gilani said such incidents  could not deter the government’s resolve to fight the menace.
While the president said the culprits of such heinous crime would not be spared

Firing on Kohistan Bus crrying passangers to Gilgit

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MANSEHRA: At least 16 people were killed Tuesday when gunmen opened fire on a passenger bus in the district of Kohistan, police said.

The bus was carrying at least 25 passengers from Rawalpindi to Gilgit. "Armed men hiding on both sides of the road attacked the bus," a local police official said. "Sixteen people have died and seven wounded," he added.

The ambush happened near the town of Harban, 130 miles north of the capital Islamabad.

The bus was stopped, before passengers were ordered off and shot in the mountainous district.

President condemns Kohistan shooting incident

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ISLAMABAD, Feb 28 (APP): President Asif Ali Zardari on Tuesday strongly condemned the incident of firing at a bus in Kohistan killing several passengers and injuring many others.The President said the culprits of such heinous crime would not be spared.He prayed for the departed souls to rest in peace and for the grant of patience to the bereaved families.The President directed the concerned authorities to ensure best medical treatment for the injured.

Monday, 27 February 2012

Broadband QoS Survey 2011 Results Unveiled

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As we earlier reported, Pakistan Telecommunication Authority had conducted this Quality of Service survey for wireless and wireline broadband operators throughout the country during third and fourth quarter of 2011.
Authority has now made the survey results public, which we are presenting for our readers.
Performance Indicators:
During Quality of Service (QoS) survey PTA considered following indicators:
  • Service Availability,
  • Download and Upload bandwidth Speed,
  • Round-Trip Time (RTT)
  • Retain-ability.
Broadband Service Availability indicates the number of times PTA was able to successfully access the broadband services. The bandwidth speed is the measure of how much data a
subscriber can receive or send to the maximum for different tariffs. RTT is the time taken for the data packet to reach a particular destination and return.
Retain-ability is measure of how much time a connection remained connected during the period of 60 minutes.
PTA said that it graded each QoS parameter into Grade A, B, C, D and E based on the
percentage of score obtained during the measurement.
512 Kbps Packages:
For 512Kbps broadband package of wireless broadband service providers, Wateen Telecom has been placed in Category-A in Lahore, Rawalpindi, Karachi and Quetta and Category-B in Peshawar.
Similarly Wi-Tribe in Karachi and Rawalpindi/Islamabad, Qubee in Lahore and Rawalpindi and WorldCall in Lahore are placed in Category-A. Qubee and WorldCall in Karachi and Wi-Tribe in Lahore are placed at Category-B.
Similarly for 512Kbps broadband package of wireline broadband service providers, Cyber Net was placed in Category-A in Karachi, Rawalpindi/Islamabad and Quetta whereas in Category-B in Lahore and Peshawar. MicroNet (NayaTel) in Category-A in Rawalpindi/Islamabad.
1 Mbps Packages
For 1Mbps broadband package of wireless broadband service providers, Wateen Telecom has been placed in Category-A in Lahore and Rawalpindi/Islamabad and Category-B in Karachi, Quetta and Peshawar.
Similarly Qubee and WorldCall are in Category-A at Lahore and Category-B at Karachi and Wi-Tribe is in Category-B at Rawalpindi/Islamabad.
Similarly for 1Mbps broadband package of wireline broadband service providers, PTCL has been placed in Category-A in Lahore, Rawalpindi/Islamabad, Peshawar and Quetta and in Category-B in Karachi.
LinkDotNet has obtained Category-A in Rawalpindi/Islamabad and Quetta and in Lahore in Category-C. Whereas, MicroNet has been placed in Category-A in Rawalpindi/Islamabad.
Wireless Broadband Operators:
Check below the detailed table with scores for all wireless operators in different cities:
Broadband QoS Survey Results 2011 6 thumb Broadband QoS Survey 2011 Results Unveiled
Click on image for larger view
Following is the overall standing of wireless operators; this table doesn’t indicate the ranks, rather shows the rating of operators in number of cities where service was surveyed.
For instance, Wateen was tested in 10 cities, out of which it scored A in 6 cities while Grade B in 4 cities.
Broadband QoS Survey Results 2011 5 thumb Broadband QoS Survey 2011 Results Unveiled
Note: Click on image for larger view
Wire-line Operators:
Broadband QoS Survey Results 2011 8 thumb Broadband QoS Survey 2011 Results Unveiled
Note: Click on image for larger view
Broadband QoS Survey Results 2011 7 thumb Broadband QoS Survey 2011 Results Unveiled
Note: Click on image for larger view

Ufone Launches Special Mobile Internet Package

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Ufone Launches Special Mobile Internet Package



Ufone logo Ufone Launches Special Mobile Internet PackageUfone has launched this virtually unlimited mobile internet package with a 4GB limit per day, at extremely low rate, i.e. 99 Paisas per day (no additional taxes) – that’s 29.70 rupees per month.
You will have to believe what I just said, except there’s a catch. This package is available during 1 AM to 3 PM next day; meaning that 14 hours a day. Even then Rs. 1 per day is nothing, I would say, for what they are offering.
Package Details:
  • Data Volume: 4GB per day
  • Daily Charges: Rs. 0.99/- Inclusive of Tax
  • Validity: 1:00 AM till 3:00 PM
How to Subscribe:
  • To subscribe to the package of your choice, dial 100 or SMS ‘SUB’ to 810 .
How to Unsubscribe from 4GB Mobile Internet Package (1 AM to 3 PM)
  • To unsubscribe from Special Unlimited Internet Package users will SMS UNSUB to short code 7810
Terms and Conditions for 4GB Mobile Internet Package (1 AM to 3 PM)
  • This is a limited time offer
  • Subscription in case for new customers on Ufone network can take up to 24 hours.
  • Package will automatically renew on daily basis
  • Rs. 0.99 will be deducted on daily basis for re-subscription
  • Users who do not have sufficient balance will be un-subscribed automatically
  • Remaining data will not carry forward to next day
  • Fair usage policy of 4 GB limit per day apply
  • Users subscribed to Hourly Mobile Internet package will not be able to subscribe this package
  • User will not be able to subscribe to Hourly Mobile Internet package if they are subscribe to this data package
  • Users will have to unsubscribe or consume their bundle fully before subscribing to Hourly Internet package
  • This package is available to all Prepaid Ufone customers on all commercial packages
  • This service is not offered on Prepaid and Postpaid VPN packages.
  • Data Packages cannot be utilized during International roaming.
  • MMS, Premium URL or Ufone WAP Portal premium downloads will be charged as normal
  • Users can get GPRS and MMS settings by calling Ufone helpline 333 or sending an SMS with “handset model” to 222.
  • Rs.0.50/ + tax would be applicable on “Info” SMS send to 800 for Prepaid Subscribers.
Complete details of Ufone Mobile Internet/GPRS Packages:
Ufone Mobile Internet Packages thumb Ufone Launches Special Mobile Internet Package
* Auto renewal after 24 hours.
** Fair usage policy of 4 GB apply on Postpaid Mobile Internet package.

India, Pakistan and SAARC

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Manmohan Singh and Yusuf Raza Gilani hold the key to South Asia’s progress
The world is convinced that the 21st century will be Asia’s century. The only question is whether it will be only East Asia’s century or South Asia’s as well.
China’s great moderniser Deng Xiaoping famously told the late Rajiv Gandhi that “the 21st century can only be the Asian century if India and China combine to make it so”. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh can well tell his Pakistani counterpart this week that the only way South Asia can become a vibrant element of the new Asian century is if India and Pakistan combine to make it so.
As leaders of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc) meet later this week in Bhutan, they must all ask themselves where this important part of Asia is headed, even as Asia to our East moves relentlessly forward.
Do any of Saarc’s members have a future that can be truly independent of their South Asian identity? Hardly. Can Pakistan hope to be part of a dynamic and rising Asia without resolving its problems at home and with India? Impossible. Can India sustain high growth for long, like China, without a more cooperative relationship with its neighbours, including Pakistan? Unlikely.
At the end of the first decade of the 21st century, South Asia stands once again at a cross roads. It can go forward, along with the more dynamic economies of East Asia, and emerge as the second engine of global growth by the middle of the century, or it can remain in a low-level equilibrium of poverty, conflict and perpetual instability.
If there are any political leaders or strategic analysts in any of the South Asian countries who think that their country can break loose from the neighbourhood and have a rosy future irrespective of what happens in the region, they live in a world of make believe.
The region has had such leaders before. Many in Pakistan thought they could delink from South Asia and attach themselves to the richer Arab and Islamic world to their west. Some in India thought New Delhi too can delink itself from its neighbourhood and “Look East” for prosperity. South Asia’s smaller countries also had fanciful notions of their individual autonomy. Some, like the Maoists in Nepal and the Sinhala chauvinists in Sri Lanka, still see a future for themselves independent of the “Mother Continent”.
The saner lot, even in Pakistan, recognise that what geography and economics propose, mere politics cannot dispose.
If Saarc has to be revived and made a more dynamic regional organisation, then India and Pakistan must get their act together. Both countries have huge internal problems and there are constituencies for peace in both countries, just as there are constituencies for exporting domestic problems across the border in both. Pakistan has used terror to thwart India’s progress, but the elephant moves on at a handsome pace of 8 per cent and more, even as Pakistan has slowed down to 2-3 per cent growth in recent years.
The last few years have, however, shown that the two neighbours owe it to their own people and their region as a whole to amicably resolve their differences, if each of the two countries and the region as a whole have to move forward.
The starting point of any meaningful dialogue between India and Pakistan is for the two to recognise each other’s concerns. Pakistan must demonstrate much greater understanding of India’s concerns about cross-border terrorism and the need to convince Indian public opinion about its sincerity in dealing with the planners and perpetrators of the 26/11 Mumbai and several other terrorist attacks.
Equally, India must address Pakistan’s genuine fears about river water utilisation and deal convincingly with the issue of Kashmir. Pakistan must rid itself of baseless fears about Indian attempts to destabilise it because any destabilisation of Pakistan can only hurt India even more.
The dialogue between Dr Singh and former Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf began with the mutual acknowledgment of these realities and each other’s concerns. It reached a critical point of mutual agreement when President Musharraf got dethroned.
It appears Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani is fighting shy of picking up the threads from where President Musharraf had left them off. Much water has flown down the Indus and US President Barack Obama’s AfPak policy has muddied the waters. It has certainly encouraged Pakistan to overplay its hand.
Dr Singh should remind his counterpart that despite all the money the US is pouring into Pakistan, its economy is in doldrums, with mounting debt, 3 per cent growth and 9 per cent inflation. Pakistan has itself become a victim of the jihadi terrorism and internal conflict.
If realism on Pakistan’s part implies getting a reality check on India’s relative size and success, realism on India’s part implies coming to terms with Pakistan’s power to be a spoiler. Dr Singh and Mr Musharraf came around to getting a balanced and correct view of each other’s strengths and weaknesses. They worked out a realistic modus vivendi. Mr Gilani and his friends in the Pakistan army must catch up and get real.
A realistic and pragmatic leadership in the region is one which tries to resolve cross-border issues so that domestic problems can be handled better. The challenge for every Saarc government is at home and unless domestic problems are tackled, the region will not progress or congeal.
India and Pakistan bear a special responsibility to revitalise Saarc as the region’s biggest nations. The India-Pakistan quarrel has made Saarc non-functional. A resolution of the disputes between the two is vital to the region’s development.
It was in April 2005 that Dr Singh and Mr Musharraf began writing a new chapter in South Asian history. April 2010 would be a good month to get that project back on track.

India plans wargames near Pakistan border

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india wargamesNEW DELHI: The Indian military is to conduct one of its largest mock war drills —involving 20,000 troops —close to the country’s border with Pakistan, an official said on Monday.
The manoeuvres, named Shoorveer or Brave Warrior, which will also involve 200 Russian-made tanks, are due to begin in the deserts of India’s state of Rajasthan next month, army spokesman colonel Jagdeep Dahiya told AFP.
“The exercise will be one of the largest manoeuvres conducted so far,” he said, adding that latest warplanes would be factored into the drills, which are scheduled to end in May.
In a separate statement the military said tanks, frontline combat vehicles, artillery, helicopters, fighter jets, drones, air-defence weapons and military radars would be part of the exercise.
Another military source said the event would be held less than 200 kilometres (124 miles) from the highly militarised border with Pakistan.
Dahiya dismissed fears the exercise —to be conducted by an elite military corps raised only for cross-border assault —would crank up tensions between New Delhi and Islamabad.
“We do inform Pakistan in advance whenever such large-scale exercises are conducted by us,” the army colonel added.(AFP)